Glanbia’s improving trends for 2020 so far

Siobhán Talbot

Ireland’s Glanbia has reported “improving trends” in the third quarter of 2020 while navigating the challenges resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic. Wholly owned revenues were up by 1%, and on a like-for-like basis, up by 3.1% versus 2019.

Good performance was seen from Glanbia Nutritionals, maintaining growth trajectory, with its like-for-like revenues up 10.9% against the prior year. Glanbia Performance Nutrition in the third quarter also reported improvements, although third quarter like-for-like branded revenue was down 2.3% versus 2019 with positive pricing. Its transformation programme is on track and delivering margin improvements, the company says.

Meanwhile, Glanbia’s joint ventures continue to deliver. Commissioning of the new project in Michigan, US commenced on 21 October 2020 and will take place over the next eight months. When fully operational, the facility will process 3.6m litres (8m pounds) of milk per day into a range of superior quality block cheese and value-added whey products for US and international markets. The new project in Portlaoise, Ireland is at an advanced stage in its construction process with commissioning expected to commence in the first half of 2021.

Overall, the group is in a strong financial position, with net debt at the period end improved by €187.7 million versus the prior year with a net debt to EBITDA ratio of 1.95 times. It is also intending to launch a share buy-back programme of up to €50 million.

Siobhán Talbot, Glanbia’s group managing director, says, “Through the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic the Glanbia portfolio has been resilient, particularly the Glanbia Nutritionals segment and our joint ventures. In the third quarter, trends in Glanbia Performance Nutrition improved significantly with an increase in revenues and margins versus the second quarter as markets gradually reopened and trading patterns improved.

“The group has continued to focus on improving its financial position while maintaining investment in growth; with all key strategic projects on track and the acquisition of Foodarom closing in the third quarter. Operating cash flow has been strong and net debt versus the same period in the prior year has reduced by €188 million. We expect to continue to build momentum into the fourth quarter and to exit the year well positioned for 2021 growth.”

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